Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Excerpts from : Breakfast at the Victory - Mysticism of Ordinary Experience

by Prof James Carse

contributed by Ajay Narendra

"All experience, to borrow an expression of the mystics, is
bounded by the boundless. Every step on our journey adds to
what we know but it also reveals there is no end to knowing.
This book is an invitation to see how extraordinary the ordinary
is when we rediscover it by way of the mystical."

..." Marginalizing the ego, abandoning it to the circumference,
is a way of entering the soul. In fact, it might be more accurate
to say that marginalizing the ego is precisely the
work of the soul. This is the work the mystics call “naughting”
the ego. It was not the infinite spaces that terrified Pascal; it
was the spacelessness of the self within. There is good reason
for his terror: Pascal was a person in whom the soul was awake
and the ego desperate to grab any line that would save it from
being swallowed by the boundless."

...and here comes the bombshell >>>( from the same book)

"Something else: because our struggle in life is inherently a
struggle against samsara, and because for that brief time we
did not resist the passing away, we existed in that state which
Islamic mystics know as fana al-fana, the passing away of the
passing away. Some mystics call it ecstasy. Buddhists describe
it with the starkest possible declaration: Nirvana is samsara.
Nirvana, the highest goal of the spiritual life, is identical with
the impermanence of everyday life. “That which is the limit
of nirvana is also the limit of samsara; there is not the slightest
difference between the two.” (Nagarjuna)
If we are looking for the mystical, we need go no further
than the Victory, no further than the most ordinary of our ordinary

and Khalil Gibran said it all in just one sentence : "“Yes, there is Nirvana; it is in leading your sheep to a green pasture, and in putting your child to sleep, and in writing the last line of your poem”.

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